This article explores how our work as collaborative historians has allowed us to map out the stories of Jewish families in Girona during the early decades of the fifteenth century - a crucial moment in their history - by pulling together documents from royal, municipal, and notarial archives. Here we focus on the Vidal family--Caravida, his first wife Bonafilla, and second wife Regina, analyzing hundreds of records to tell a tale of polygamy, accusations of theft, the death of a son, conversion to Christianity, divorce, a mixed marriage, and investigation and conviction by the inquisition. Interwoven with our narrative of the Vidals, we discuss some of the tools that have helped us bring together such varied sources. Making all this possible is our use of a relational database which has aided our ability to link together such rich documentation from a variety of archives. Finally, we also consider the role of happenstance in our examination of certain archival sources; specifically, the impact that stumbling across the registers of the local notary who worked with the inquisition had on our understanding of the troubles that Jewish and converso families faced as they became caught in conflicts between ecclesiastical, municipal, and royal officials.
Guerson, Alexandra and Wessell Lightfoot, Dana
"Complicated Lives and Collaborative Research: Mapping the Effects of Conversion to Christianity on Jewish Marriage Practices in Late Medieval Girona,"
Medieval People: Vol. 36:
1, Article 16.
Available at: https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/medpros/vol36/iss1/16
Guerson and Wessell Lightfoot Complicated Lives and Collaborative Research Captions.docx
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